skip to page content
Talk to the Veterans Crisis Line now
U.S. flag
An official website of the United States government

Health Systems Research

Go to the VA ORD website
Go to the QUERI website

HSR&D Citation Abstract

Search | Search by Center | Search by Source | Keywords in Title

Diabetes mellitus in individuals with spinal cord injury or disorder.

Lavela SL, Weaver FM, Goldstein B, Chen K, Miskevics S, Rajan S, Gater DR. Diabetes mellitus in individuals with spinal cord injury or disorder. The journal of spinal cord medicine. 2006 Sep 1; 29(4):387-95.

Related HSR&D Project(s)

Dimensions for VA is a web-based tool available to VA staff that enables detailed searches of published research and research projects.

If you have VA-Intranet access, click here for more information

VA staff not currently on the VA network can access Dimensions by registering for an account using their VA email address.
   Search Dimensions for VA for this citation
* Don't have VA-internal network access or a VA email address? Try searching the free-to-the-public version of Dimensions


BACKGROUND/OBJECTIVE: To examine diabetes prevalence, care, complications, and characteristics of veterans with a spinal cord injury or disorder (SCI/D). METHODS: A national survey of veterans with an SCI/D was conducted using Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) survey questions. Data were compared with national Centers for Disease Control and Prevention BRFSS data for veteran and nonveteran general populations. RESULTS: Overall prevalence of diabetes in individuals with an SCI/D was 20% (3 times higher than in the general population). Veterans with an SCI/D and veterans, in general, had a higher prevalence of diabetes across all age groups; however, those with an SCI/D who were 45 to 59 years of age had a higher prevalence than other veterans. One fourth of the persons with an SCI/D and diabetes reported that diabetes affected their eyes or that they had retinopathy (25%), and 41% had foot sores that took more than 4 weeks to heal. More veterans, both with (63%) and without an SCI/D (60%), took a class on how to manage their diabetes than the general population (50%). Veterans with an SCI/D and diabetes were more likely to report other chronic conditions and poorer quality of life than those without diabetes. CONCLUSIONS: Diabetes prevalence is greater among veterans with an SCI/D compared with the civilian population, but is similar to that of other veterans, although it may occur at a younger age in those with an SCI/D. Veterans with an SCI/D and diabetes reported more comorbidities, more slow-healing foot sores, and poorer quality of life than those without diabetes. Efforts to prevent diabetes and to provide early intervention in persons with SCI/D are needed.

Questions about the HSR website? Email the Web Team

Any health information on this website is strictly for informational purposes and is not intended as medical advice. It should not be used to diagnose or treat any condition.